Wednesday, 1 June 2011

End of Month – May

Wow, well after the very warm and dry start to Spring over the past few weeks has seen cooler temperature but it has remained relatively dry still. Rain has arrived, but never lasts long and even heavy downpours seem to vanish without any trace within hours and the ground goes back to being parched, dry and cracked. As a result my seedlings seem to be lagging behind a bit at the moment, even with lots of watering and pampering, there’s too much grey so we’re at a bit of a standstill.

I hope everyone else hasn’t suffered too much with the high winds experienced last week? I’ve had a little bit of damage – Buddleja branches broken and had to stick some emergency bamboo canes in the ground to protect the Sweet Rocket but otherwise everything is fine.

The ‘new’ border… which I really ought to rename to Aster border or grass border… who knows!
It’s looking a bit grim in the background but I hope to have that sorted soon now I have the time after finishing essays and just now slogging along with the dissertation.

Well, the Buddleja border looks far more exciting here than in reality… I hope this is the first year I have managed to sort it and am somewhat pleased with the result. Previously it’s always a bit of a let-down, especially once the Buddleja takes over and the Asters grow tall and effectively block out all the light to the lower area – which happens to be at the decking and is generally the area we see all the time.

I’m loving Salvia Caradonna… And so are the Bees because within seconds of opening the box I had a Bee on it :)

Recently I’ve also noticed the tiny Bees are back that I had last year… The tiny Blue ones that were chewing up the Hollyhock leaves and rolling them into tiny little balls, but I haven’t managed to get a shot of it again this year.
I also noticed something rather sad on Saturday evening, two were dead inside an Allium head… I assume it was due to rain or the high winds and they’d decided to take cover inside, as I’ve seen other Bees do. Only for some reason these died… I took photos and might post another day.

The Bees have arrived in abundance at the moment, and this is one I’ve never seen before and at first I thought might be a Bee fly because of its round body, but it’s clear from the photo that it is some sort of Bee – perhaps a Cuckoo Bee?

A variety of Bees are loving the Pyracantha blooms.

I also discovered a Wasp drinking nectar from my Cotoneasters… I thought they were predatory and didn’t like nectar/pollen??

Could anyone confirm what this is for me please?
I think it could possibly be Gladiolus, but the leaves are much too small… I did plant lots of Freesia last year but none came up, do you think it could be them? Or is it some ornamental grass? They aren’t round at the base though, so I don’t think they’re grass either………

Lots of Nigella seed… Only I don’t remember sowing any Nigella this year? Lol, I think I might’ve had a plant in this area last year, well it’s certainly left its legacy behind!

The Geraniums are out, a garden can never have too many Geraniums!

Astrantia Major ‘Roma’

The birds will appreciate the berries on this Pyracantha in the Winter…

And I made quite a discovery… The Wisteria has survived! I’m unsure whether to just get rid of it, all it’s managed are two little branches right down near the base… Everything else, I assume is dead. I had planned to get rid of it before I found this, and I’m wondering whether to still throw it away. The past two winters have taken their toll.

Copyright 2011 Liz.
All rights reserved. Content created by Liz for Gwirrel’s Garden.


Carolyn ♥ said...

Love your blooms... especially the shades of purple.

Cheryl said...

Hi Liz,

I would give the wisteria a reprieve and see what happens. They are just to beautiful to give up on. Mine has been damaged the last two winters. I gave it a good mulch and fed it (I don't usually) is now putting on lots of new growth.

I hate to find dead bees. Some of mine have drowned in the pockets of water on the teasel stems. I have taken a sharp knife to the pockets this more drowning bees in this garden. Poor things.

I agree, you can never have too many geraniums. They also help with the rabbit situation here. I plant rabbit fodder near them and the bunnies leave my precious plants alone. It also works with red campion.

My garden is so dry I cannot believe it. I always try to adopt a no water policy, apart from tubs and hanging baskets.....this year that has gone out of the window. Must say I feel so guilty, water is so precious......

Can't help with the shoots.....but at a guess I would say Gladioli.

Wasps visit my persicaria 'fat domino' regularly. They love should be sold with a warning on it, for those that allergies to wasp stings (like my son)!!

Nutty Gnome said...

It looks like Japanese Blood Grass to me Liz - they have that distinctive red shaft to some of the stems and are flatter than ordinary grass.

With your wisteria, just cut off the dead branches fairly low down and leave it alone for a couple of years to recover ..then decide whether you want to get stut or not! :)

shirl said...

Liz, wonderful to see so many bees feeding in your garden. Lol… we haven’t been so parched here so welcome the warmer sunny days – as do our bees. It is great getting out with a camera with the challenge of trying to catch them still for a photo isn’t it? I think I got some okay ones yesterday :-)

Loved your geranium and Astrantia shots. Very nice as is that Salvia Caradonna – I think I’ll need to look out for that one :-)

Mystery grass like foliage in clumps like that? I’d guess Allium seeds have germinated if you’ve had any in the area. If so, they’ll take a couple of years to flower – always a delight when they do though :-)

Wait a minute… just spotted Nutty Gome’s comment. I did notice the red at the base too but thought it was maybe another plant. From memory, I think you planted the blood grass somewhere didn’t you?

VW said...

Pretty bright shots. Wow, you even made pyracantha look nice -not my favorite plant after a few contacts with the thorns.

Donna said...

Lovely blooms Liz..the mystery shoots look like a native glad we have here...

ShySongbird said...

The weather has been very similar here Liz, everything is terribly parched!

Lovely photos of your beautiful blooms again, I particularly liked the Astrantia.

I find Buddleia is always the first victim in high winds but it still carries on from year to year :)

I love Nigella but they never seem to do very well in my garden... well, they do in the front garden but I want them in the back one!